As modern society’s routine sequestration of death and grief is increasingly replaced by late-modern society’s growing concern with existential issues and emotionality, this book explores grief as a social emotion, bringing together contributions from scholars across the social sciences and humanities to examine its social and cultural aspects. Thematically organised in order to consider the historical changes in our understanding of grief, literary treatments of grief, contemporary forms of grief and grief as a perspective from which to engage in critique of society, it provides insights into the sociality of grief and will appeal to scholars of sociology, social theory and cultural studies with interests in the emotions and social pathologies.
Table of Contents
Introduction: Towards a Sociology of Grief: Historical, Cultural and Social Explorations of Grief as an Emotion Part 1: Grief and History 1. Grief in Modern History: An Ongoing Evolution 2. Diversity in Human Grieving: Historical and Cross-Cultural Perspectives 3. The Impact of he Two World Wars on Cultures of Grieving: Grief in England, 1914-1980 Part 2: Grief and Literature 4. Magical Thinking: Experiences of Grief and Mourning in George Saunders’ Lincoln In The Bardo and Jesmyn Ward’s Sing, Unburied, Sing 5. A Story of Loss: Self-Narration of Grief and Public Feeling Rules 6. Writing Grief: The Fraught Work of Mourning in Fiction Part 3: Forms of Grief 7. The Denial of Grief: Reflections from a Decade of Anthropological Research on Parental Bereavement and Child Death 8. Public Mourning: Displays of Grief and Grievance 9. Grief in Human and Companion-Animal Loss, Bonding and Dividual Pet-Personhood Part 4: Grief and Social Critique 10. The Medicalisation of Grief 11. Suffocated Grief, Resilience and Survival Among African-American Families 12. Grief in an Individualised Society: A Critical Corrective to the Advancement of Diagnostic Culture
Michael Hviid Jacobsen is Professor of Sociology at Aalborg University, Denmark. He is the editor of The Poetics of Crime and Postmortal Society and Critical and Cultural Interactionism, and co-editor of The Sociology of Zygmunt Bauman, Encountering the Everyday, The Transformation of Modernity, Utopia: Social Theory and the Future, Liquid Criminology, Imaginative Methodologies: The Poetic Imagination in the Social Sciences, and Towards a Criminology of Emotions.
Anders Petersen is Associate Professor of Sociology at Aalborg University, Denmark. He is the co-author of Late Modern Subjectivity and its Discontents and the co-editor of The Social Pathologies of Contemporary Civilization, Imaginative Methodologies: The Poetic Imagination in the Social Sciences and Critical Happiness Studies.